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Using AutoFill

When you have a row or column of cells that are going to be filled with a series of values that follow a certain pattern you can use Autofill. To start the series, enter values in two adjacent cells and highlight them, a small black square appears at the bottom right corner of the selection and you can now drag this to complete your range of values.

When you have dragged far enough across or down the screen, release your mouse button and the selected range will be filled with values. Excel uses your first two cells to determine the pattern, so if you have cells containing the values 2 and 4 Excel will fill your range with even numbers.

The table below shows some examples of Autofill series that can be used.

Initial selection

Extended series

1, 2, 3

4, 5, 6


10:00, 11:00, 12:00


Tue, Wed, Thu


Tuesday, Wednesday, Thursday


Feb, Mar, Apr

Jan, Apr

Jul, Oct, Jan

Jan-99, Apr-99

Jul-99, Oct-99, Jan-00

15-Jan, 15-Apr

15-Jul, 15-Oct

1999, 2000

2001, 2002, 2003

1-Jan, 1-Mar

1-May, 1-Jul, 1-Sep,...

Qtr3 (or Q3 or Quarter3)

Qtr4, Qtr1, Qtr2,...

Product 1, Code

Product 2, Code, Product 3, Code,...

text1, textA

text2, textA, text3, textA,...

1st Period

2nd Period, 3rd Period,...

Product 1

Product 2, Product 3,...

If you want to make your own series of values you can create a custom list and Excel will use this to autofill your cells.  For example, you could create a custom list of Roman numerals so that highlighting the sequence I, II would result in the cells being filled I, II, III, IV, V, etc.

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